This picture of Dovecot Street shows it as it was in the early twentieth century, a number of these buildings survived into the 1950s and beyond. We start with Collingwood’s which frequently features in pictures of Stockton, next is Gourmet Cafe Temperance Hotel, the name Fothergill appears at the left hand side, I presume this to be the owner. The Lit & Phil Institute building has a mansard roof with oval windows, the Ketton Ox in Yarm has similar openings on its upper floor. In the case of the Ketton Ox this room was used for cock fighting, I doubt such activities took place at the Lit & Phil.
When I was a schoolboy I used to go straight from school to the Lit & Phil in Stockton to play chess against members of a chess club, most of my opponents were at least 40 years older than me and experience always won out, I never won a game.
The Alma Hotel advertising Bass Beers has its lower windows partially obscured to prevent the passing public from seeing what went on inside, I don’t know if this was a law but I think all pubs had frosted glass or name signs in the windows. Kay’s Spreadeagle Hotel is a very narrow building, the bay window and pillars on the upper floors look to be pre-Victorian. I can’t read the sign on the next building but I think the second word may be “Fleece”, this is followed by another bay windowed frontage. The building with Martin Tailor on its side also has an advert which appears to read ‘RATTER and MEN’S’ something, I know my eyes are not brilliant but it still looks to me like ‘RATTER’. There are a few more unreadable signs beyond the Tailor’s shop and at the very back left is a pale building with “THEA” on its front, I presume this to be a theatre. I would be interested if anybody with keener eyes or a knowledge of these buildings can add any more names.
Image and details courtesy of Bruce Coleman.